City logged $555 in grant prep

Jon Hawley

The Daily Advance

4 Comments | Leave a Comment

Elizabeth City officials put about $555 worth of staff time into pursuing a controversial grant application to the Golden LEAF Foundation last year, based on work hours Elizabeth City City Manager Rich Olson described Friday.

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The $555 quoted, and excellently documented by Mr. Hawley, was comprised mostly of various salaries, that would have been paid regardless of what projects the various parties were involved with. They are, in essence, fixed expenses...there had been no additional "out-of-pocket" expenses mentioned in the article. In contrast, any monies paid to outside sources will be additional expenses...which I'd bet would end up considerably higher than $555. Since the projects are dead issues vis-à-vis Golden Leaf for the time being, what specific purpose is there in going forward with this investigation? To me, it seems like "much ado about mouse turds". I would have taken more interest if Mssrs. Olson and Peel had spent major dollars in travel, lodging, entertainment, etc. during this venture. From what I can see....they spent nothing, aside from a minuscule portion of their time. Given the completeness of Mr. Hawley's documentation, I'd say that's extremely favorable budget stewardship by these men. It seems to me that the best approach would be to stop this micro-inquisition in its tracks, before any more money is spent, and perhaps for all the principals to agree to communicate a little more fully with one-another in the future, before pursuing a similar undertaking. Of course, having moved into the State less than a month ago, I know nothing about the political and emotional dynamics that possibly are playing a role in this. Nor am I interested in learning about them. Everything I read told me that Mssrs. Olson and Peel were acting in the best interests of the people. That's good enough for me.

Why are they so concerned?

"City councilors and school officials have strongly opposed the charter school, blasting it for potentially draining students and funding from public schools, and blasted Mayor Joe Peel for pursuing it." My question is, if the public schools are doing such a wonderful job of educating our students, then why should City Councilors and School Officials be so concerned that a Charter School would "drain students and funding" from them? Hmmmm....

Incredible Irony

Today's TDA wins the 'Implicit Irony' award for the month of February. Above the fold, we have the story of the City Council demanding an investigation into the City Manager and the Mayor for spending $555 to request a grant for an aviation-themed STEM school, in the city where the USCG has based its ONLY Depot level aviation maintenance facility, which now hires military retirees with aviation maintenance training and expertise. Below the fold, we have the Currituck County and College of the Albemarle joint-venture, the Regional Aviation and Technical Training Center, receiving Kudos from the North Carolina Community College System and being honored by receiving the Distinguished Partners in Excellence Award.

Put it all to bed!

If Brooks wants to investigate something, try looking into the 2-3 hour "breaks" taken by city street maintenance employees at some select local fast food establishments and convenience stores around town. This has been brazenly going on for years. Oh, excuse me, my bad! Those people are "a horse of a different color" (pun intended) and exempt from being held to close scrutiny, confrontation, and accountability. Oh yes indeedy, racism, bias, and reverse discrimination is still alive and doing quite well in good ole' EC!

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